The following article from the UK’s Telegraph is a perfect follow up to the fantastic piece by Glenn Greenwald about how much pleasure Obama gets from murdering people with a joystick from halfway across the world using drones that I posted on Tuesday. This expansion of drone usage is extraordinarily disturbing, not only from a moral point of view in that you are desensitizing killing in such a way that it become like a video game, but also from the karmic point of view in that what comes around goes around. Let’s not forget 30,000 drones are planned to enter U.S. airspace by 2020 (thanks Congress, you can’t pass a budget, but when it comes to spying on and potentially murdering your own people there’s no hold up). Do you really think these will stay unarmed?
President Obama has reportedly allowed his CIA chief to deepen the connection between Special Forces and secret intelligence, a potentially unconstitutional move because it can mean that military operations are no longer answerable to Congress. More important still, the CIA also seems to mastermind and direct the drone strikes which have suddenly become the central element of US (and therefore British) military strategy.
Second, US soldiers and airmen are not placed in harm’s way. This is very important in a democracy. In America, the killing of a dozen military personnel is a political event. The death of a dozen Afghan or Pakistani villagers in a remote part of what used to be called the north‑west frontier does not register, unless a US military spokesmen labels them “militants”, in which case it becomes a victory.
We need a serious public debate on drones. They are still in their infancy, but have already changed the nature of warfare. The new technology points the way, within just a few decades, to a battlefield where soldiers never die or even risk their lives, and only alleged enemies of the state, their family members, and civilians die in combat – a world straight out of the mouse’s tale in Alice in Wonderland: “ ’I’ll be judge, I’ll be jury’, said cunning old Fury. ‘I’ll try the whole cause and condemn you to death.’ ” Justice as dealt out by drones cannot be reconciled with the rule of law which we say we wish to defend.
The article also points out that more than two thirds of Pakistanis now consider the United States an enemy. I suppose they must be getting increasingly jealous of our freedoms. My message…We the People of the United States don’t like our government much either.
Full article here.